How To Feed A Mastiff Puppy 
4 Helpful Guidelines For New Owners

by Ken Alden

When considering how to feed a Mastiff puppy, combined with the thought that a full-grown Mastiff may weigh close to 200 pounds, you’ll begin to understand why this breed seems to constantly be eating. That’s because at three months old, your Mastiff puppy will already be larger than most other adult dogs. 

How to feed a Mastiff puppy properly? This means doing the following:

  • Increasing his food intake as he grows
  • Feeding him a high protein diet
  • Feeding him consistently throughout the day

Before you bring your new Mastiff puppy home, you need to make sure that you’re able to afford the massive amount of food that your puppy will require. You also need to make a conscious effort to develop a feeding schedule that’ll satisfy your Mastiff’s hunger.

So let's get more in depth as to how to feed a Mastiff puppy by offering these 4 helpful guidelines below, starting with...

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How to feed a Mastiff puppy

How Often to Feed a Mastiff Puppy

When it comes to how to feed a Mastiff puppy, the amount of food you’re feeding your pooch is just as important as the number of meals you’re providing him with per day. There are two methods of feeding dogs, meal feeding and free feeding, and there are plenty of benefits associated with each.

Because puppies sometimes have an insatiable appetite, there are risks that come along with free-feeding your puppy. The best way to feed your Mastiff puppy is by the meal, with the number of meals he’s eating per day depending on his age.

Count The Cost: If you're thinking of getting a Mastiff it's always good to know how much feeding them will cost, here's what you can expect...

Meal Feeding

With this method, you’ll have a set number of meals that you’ll provide your puppy with each day. If he’s eating three cups per day, you might give him three meals of one cup each. You’ll leave the food out for a certain period of time before taking away his access. This can help him get used to his feeding schedule.

Here are some rough guidelines for how often to feed your Mastiff puppy at each major puppy milestone. 

  • <2 months: 3-4 meals
  • 2-3 months: 3-4 meals
  • 3-4 months: 3-4 meals
  • 4-6 months: 2-3 meals
  • 6-12 months: 2 meals


With this method of how to feed a Mastiff puppy, you’ll leave out a bowl that contains all the food he should be eating over the course of a day. If he’s eating five cups per day, you can put five cups of food out in the morning and allow him to graze when he gets hungry as the day progresses. 

The biggest risk that comes along with free-feeding is a lack of self-control. If your Mastiff eats out of boredom, he might eat all of his food in one sitting. This could put him at risk for digestive issues, particularly bloat.

How Much Food to Feed a Mastiff Puppy

As your puppy gets bigger, he’ll need much more food to provide him with all the energy he needs to run around the backyard and perform the daily activities that come along with being a puppy. By giving him enough food, he’ll grow big and strong and stay as healthy as possible. 

The actual amount of food that you prepare for your Mastiff depends on his age and the type of food you’re giving him. In addition to dry food, you should also be giving him wet food a few times per day, at least during the first few months.

Dry Food

Feeding your puppy dry food is the easiest way to guarantee that he’s getting all the nutrients he needs to grow. It’s also significantly less expensive than traditional wet food, which can save you a boatload of money when you think about just how much your Mastiff eats every day.

Here are some rough dry food guidelines you should follow when it comes to feeding your Mastiff puppy at each period of puppyhood.

  • <2 months: 3-4 cups
  • 2-3 months: 4-6 cups
  • 3-4 months: 5-7 cups
  • 4-6 months: 6-8 cups
  • 6-12 months: 8-12 cups

Remember that you’ll be splitting up these amounts into several servings. You should make every effort to provide your Mastiff puppy with equally-sized meals throughout the day. 

Wet Food

Keep in mind when figuring out how to feed a Mastiff puppy you don’t necessarily have to give your Mastiff wet food. However, there are plenty of benefits that are associated with giving wet food to puppies.

In addition to tasting much better and encouraging your puppy to eat when his appetite is low, wet food can also help to keep your puppy hydrated, consume higher amounts of protein in his diet, and improve the overall status of his health.

You might want to think about giving your Mastiff wet food once or twice a day, especially for the first few months of his life. After that, you can decide whether or not to continue giving him wet food.

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Here’s a great course that addresses these issues along with many other dog training basics: Check it out now!

How Long to Keep a Mastiff on Puppy Food

Though we all like to assume that our puppies will stay puppies forever, there is a point at which we need to transition from puppy food over to adult food. Exactly when you begin this transition depends on the size and age of your puppy.

By failing to transition over to adult food at the proper time, you might be putting your Mastiff at risk for becoming overweight or even denying him the nutrients he needs at his particular age. Here are some recommendations for feeding puppy food to your Mastiff. how to feed a mastiff puppy

When to Switch: For large breed dogs, particularly Mastiffs, you should be able to get away with giving him puppy food for the first 18 to 24 months of his life. After that point, he’ll be considered a full-grown adult and will no longer need the excess nutrients and ingredients typically found in puppy food.

Risks of Not Switching

When you keep a puppy on puppy food for too long or switch too soon, you can be opening the door to the development of health conditions or improper development. Here are some risks associated with each practice.

Switching too late: When you keep your Mastiff on puppy food for too long, he’ll continue to eat a high-calorie diet. After an extended period of time, this could lead to a slow weight gain and risk of obesity, which could put excess pressure on his bones and his joints. 

Switching too soon: The entire purpose of puppy food is to provide your puppy with the nutrients he needs to develop properly. When you switch to adult food too soon, your Mastiff puppy may not grow to his full potential and increase his risk for developing certain health conditions.

The most important thing you can do when it comes to your Mastiff puppy is to keep him on puppy food for 18-24 months before officially beginning the transition to adult food. If you’re unsure about the exact age you should be switching your Mastiff over, you can consult your veterinarian.

What to Feed a Mastiff Puppy

For the first few months of your Mastiff puppy’s life, you should be feeding him a diet that consists of both wet and dry food. As he gets older and closer to the point of adulthood, you can eliminate the wet food from his diet.

Feeding him a high-quality diet loaded with all the nutrients he requires will make a huge difference in his development. There are several things you should look for in the ideal food for your Mastiff puppy to ensure adequate health and development.

Selecting the Right Food

You already know that you should be feeding your Mastiff puppy a combination of wet and dry food. But, what ingredients and qualities should you be looking for when you’re picking out his food? Here are a few things to look for.

  • Foods designed for large breed dogs
  • High-calorie, high-protein food
  • Ingredients targeting joint and bone health

By feeding your Mastiff puppy a diet that features the above qualities, you can effectively target your Mastiff’s energy requirements while also helping to prevent the development of joint and bone conditions associated with large breeds.

Some Top Mastiff Puppy Food Recommendations

When it comes to buying dry food for your Mastiff, there are plenty of foods that are designed specifically for the health and nutritional needs of large breed puppies. Generally speaking, wet food options are more generalized, offering strictly puppy and adult varieties. 

In this section, we’ll overview eight of the best foods for your Mastiff puppy. The first four options are dry foods designed for breeds like Mastiffs. The last four foods are wet foods marketed as high-quality wet foods for puppies.

royal canin puppy food

Royal Canin Giant Puppy Dry Dog Food

Royal Canin dry puppy food is specifically designed for breeds known to exceed 100 pounds by adulthood, which makes it the perfect food for your Mastiff. It’s clear that Royal Canin truly considered the health concerns of breeds like Mastiffs when selecting ingredients for this food. 

It’s not unusual for large breed dogs to develop bone and joint issues due to their large frames. That’s why Royal Canin consciously added calcium and phosphorus to this dry food selection. 

Royal Canin also infused vitamins and antioxidants into the kibble to protect your Mastiff’s immune system through adulthood. That means a healthy puppy and fewer vet visits!

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wellness core dog food

Wellness CORE Large Breed Natural Grain-Free Dry Puppy Food from

This dry puppy food is one of the few large breed dry food options that are truly grain-free. As your Mastiff begins to grow, he needs to consume a diet full of protein and natural ingredients, almost as if he was still in the wild.

That’s why Wellness CORE developed a recipe free of wheat, corn, preservatives, and any other artificial flavoring. If your Mastiff wouldn’t eat it in the wild, he shouldn’t be eating it at home either! 

This recipe is absolutely loaded with pure protein and provides a mixture of turkey and chicken. You can also be sure that your puppy’s getting all the vitamins and minerals he needs, as this diet also includes real vegetables.

high protein and fat dog food

Bully Max High-Performance Super Premium Dog Food for All Ages from

This premium dog food is one of the most thoughtfully developed recipes for large breed dogs of all ages. With a 5-star recipe, there’s no doubt that your Mastiff will be highly satisfied come dinnertime.

What makes this dry food unique is the caloric density. With 535 calories per cup, you can get away with feeding your Mastiff 50% less than he normally eats without depriving him of the nutrients he desperately needs as he grows.

Bully Max was sure to develop a recipe that’s entirely meat-based and free of corn, soy, and wheat. With these ingredients and 30% protein content, your Mastiff will grow big and strong as he approaches adulthood.

purina one dog food

Purina ONE SmartBlend Natural Puppy Dog Food from

Purina One's SmartBlend is our #1 recommendation when it comes to wet food for your Mastiff. With real meat as its first ingredient, your Mastiff won’t be able to control himself when he smells and tastes this food!

This recipe includes lamb and rice, so there should be no concern about your Mastiff puppy getting all the nutrients he needs. In fact, this recipe infuses several other nutrients to help boost the health of growing puppies.

Like many dry foods, this wet food also contains antioxidants to help build a powerful immune system. The omega fatty acids found in this recipe will also help to keep your Mastiff’s coat smooth and shiny no matter what time of year it is.

purina pro plan dog food

Purina Pro Plan FOCUS Puppy Canned Wet Dog Food from

Purina's Pro Plan Wet Dog Food boasts real chicken as its number one ingredient. In addition to the savory taste of real chicken, the tender texture that comes along with this recipe will truly captivate the taste buds of your Mastiff.

In the FOCUS wet food line, you have plenty of options when it comes to flavors and ingredients. Depending on your Mastiff’s favorite meat, you have a selection between beef, chicken, salmon, and real turkey, all combined with rice.

These recipes also contain several additional ingredients for optimal puppy health and development. They contain an assortment of omega fatty acids that can help encourage a healthy coat while also protecting the brain and eyes from disease.

pedigree puppy food

Pedigree Puppy Ground Dinner Wet Canned Dog Food from

This Pedigree Wet Canned Dog Food is a prime example of wet food boasting a 100% complete and balanced diet. That means you won’t have to worry about whether your Mastiff is actually getting all the nutrients he needs to grow!

This recipe is a solid combination of beef and chicken that your Mastiff will absolutely love. Even well after dinnertime, he’ll be licking his bowl to clean up every last drop.

The ingredients in this recipe are perfect for your growing Mastiff. The recipe offers plenty of oils and minerals designed to protect your Mastiff’s coat as well as DHA, which can prove extremely beneficial in supporting your Mastiff’s brain development.

hill science diet dog food

Hill's Science Diet Wet Dog Food 

Hill's Science Wet Dog Food (Puppy) is the perfect combination of vitamins, minerals, and ingredients included to maintain and improve your Mastiff’s health as he approaches adulthood. It also happens to be one of the top wet food selections recommended by veterinarians.

This recipe boasts all-natural highly-digestible ingredients to promote healthy digestion and the prevention of unnecessary diseases. It includes high-quality protein to help your Mastiff grow stronger with each meal.

The minerals provided in this wet food help to develop strong bones, which can help your Mastiff from developing the joint and bone disorders associated with large frame dogs. Other ingredients intentionally target digestion, coat, and even DHA, which can help with eye and brain development.

How To Feed A Mastiff Puppy...Final Thoughts

Feeding a Mastiff puppy involves a lot of money, a consistent feeding schedule, and the selection of food products that are ideal for a Mastiff’s development. When you finally welcome a Mastiff puppy into your family, be sure to follow each of these feeding tips. 

  • Use meal feedings and feed your pal recommended amount for his age group.
  • Feed him both wet and dry food for the first few months.
  • Keep him on puppy food for the first 18-24 months of his life.
  • Select food that’s made for large breed puppies, particularly Mastiffs

About Author

About the Author...

Ken Alden, a dedicated Mastiff owner for over eight years, is acclaimed for his expertise in care, grooming, and training. Read more About Me and my dog Shadow.

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